Business Ethics in Apparel Manufacturing: A Literature Review

19 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2015

Date Written: December 7, 2015


Business organisations face ethical questions everyday concerning all aspects of the business. Today the management of ethics has become a very important aspect in the general management of business in order to maintain harmony within the organization and to ensure harmonious existence in the society. Business ethics can be defined as the principles and standards that determine acceptable conduct in business organizations which determined by customers, competitors, government regulators, interest groups, and the public, as well as each individual’s personal moral principles and values.

The apparel industry in Sri Lanka is one of the most important business sectors as it is the number one foreign exchange earner and the largest single employer in the manufacturing industry. The industry provides direct employment opportunities to over 300,000 and 600,000. The ethical business practices of apparel industry are more important towards the business creditability and growth of Sri Lankan economy as over the past decade, global interest has focused on how, where and by whom products were made.

The field of business ethics has traditionally been the domain of philosophers, academics and social critic. Consequently, much of today's literature about business ethics is not geared toward the practical information on managing ethics in the workplaces. The problem is the outcome of insufficient involvement of leaders and managers in discussion and literature about business ethics. Therefore, this paper focused on identifying the ethical issues in business organisations with special emphasized to the apparel manufacturing organisations. Poor working conditions, law wages, long working hours and prevention of worker rights in relation to joining together in trade unions were identified as the critical ethical issues in the apparel industry in Sri Lanka.

Keywords: Apparel manufacturing, Business Ethics, Issues, Sri Lanka

JEL Classification: L06, D29

Suggested Citation

Rathnayake, Uthpala and Karunasena, Gayani, Business Ethics in Apparel Manufacturing: A Literature Review (December 7, 2015). 12th International Conference on Business Management (ICBM) 2015, Available at SSRN: or

Uthpala Rathnayake (Contact Author)

University of Moratuwa ( email )

Bandaranayake Mawatha
Katubedda, Moratuwa 10400
Sri Lanka

Gayani Karunasena

University of Moratuwa

Bandaranayake Mawatha
Katubedda, Moratuwa 10400
Sri Lanka

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